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Title:Correlates and consequences of physical activity among single mothers
Author(s):Dlugonski, Deirdre
Director of Research:Motl, Robert W.
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Motl, Robert W.
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Greene, Jennifer C.; McAuley, Edward; Petruzzello, Steven J.
Department / Program:Kinesiology & Community Health
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):single mothers
physical activity
social cognitive theory
Abstract:Single motherhood has been associated with negative health consequences such as cardiovascular disease, depression, and stress. Participation in physical activity might improve the health of single mothers, yet little is known about the correlates and consequences of this health behavior among this group of women. The two primary aims of this study were to use social cognitive theory (SCT) to explain physical activity and to examine the health consequences of physical activity among single mothers with young children. Participants (N = 94) were single (i.e., never married, divorced/separated, or widowed), not living with a partner, aged 18 – 50 years, not pregnant, with at least one child under 5 years old. Participants completed a packet of SCT questionnaires (i.e., self-efficacy, outcome expectations, goal setting/planning, social support, and barriers) and then wore an accelerometer during all waking hours for one week. Participants then completed a second battery of physical activity and health outcomes questionnaires (i.e., GLTEQ, IPAQ, CVD symptoms, depression, anxiety, stress, physical self-perception, and health-related quality of life). Only ~24% of participants were meeting public health guidelines for physical activity based on accelerometer minutes of MVPA. SCT constructs were generally associated with self-reported and objective measures of physical activity. The relationships between health outcomes and physical activity were less consistent, but provided initial support for the importance of promoting physical activity among single mothers to improve health. Overall, results from this study support the use of SCT for explaining physical activity behavior and highlight potential targets for future physical activity interventions for single mothers. Given the levels of inactivity among single mothers, such physical activity interventions are necessary and might have important health consequences.
Issue Date:2014-01-16
Rights Information:Copyright 2013 Deirdre Dlugonski
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-01-16
Date Deposited:2013-12

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